Pittsburgh Land Bank Buys First Property

Pittsburgh Land Bank Buys First Property

Our most recent Brief detailed the changes brought about by new state legislation on land banks and redevelopment authorities and recent activities of some of the land banks in Pennsylvania.  In counties other than Philadelphia and Allegheny it will be possible to designate a redevelopment authority to perform land bank functions as a result of the new law.

That means the Pittsburgh Land Bank will continue to operate as an independent entity (a memorandum of agreement between the City of Pittsburgh, the Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA), and the Land Bank details how all three parties will work together on properties and provides for URA staffing for the Land Bank).

This past week the Land Bank board authorized its first purchase.  A search of the property record shows that it is vacant land and is exempt from property taxes due to City of Pittsburgh ownership (the City purchased it for $1,643 in 2016 and it previously owned the property from 1982 to 2000). The Land Bank bought it for $1 plus “necessary costs”. The property is to be sold to a private owner who had tried to buy the property from the City (it is not clear why that did not occur).

Based on the Land Bank’s 2018 budget it has budgeted $135,000 for acquisition costs as part of its overall expenditures of $798,512